SALT LAKE CITY — A thick blanket of smoke from wildfires hundreds of miles away darkened the skies in northern Utah on Friday.
According to the National Weather Service in Salt Lake City, an incoming cold front pushed the smoke from out-of-state wildfires in California and Oregon into the Wasatch Front.
Air quality on Friday was in the unhealthy range for all groups of people. Officials encouraged Salt Lake City residents to try and limit their time outdoors.
The National Weather Service office in Salt Lake City said the smoke will remain across the area Friday, with conditions expected to improve into the evening as winds become more northerly.
***Smoke incoming!***— NWS Salt Lake City (@NWSSaltLakeCity) August 6, 2021
Here is a look at the visible satellite imagery across the Great Basin this morning. Some of the highest concentration of smoke is now approaching the Wasatch Front! #utwx pic.twitter.com/S7yxUIcy99
In a tweet Friday, the Salt Lake City Fire Department confirmed the smoke is not from "active incidents" in Salt Lake but from regional fires.
"Those with sensitive health concerns are encouraged to stay indoors and contact their personal physician early, if needed," the department said.
8/6 - Smoke concentrations will become very noticeable as the day goes on today. Unhealthy air is expected. What will this mean for you? Avoid/reduce prolonged or heavy exertion. Move activities indoors or reschedule to a time when the air quality is better. #UTwx pic.twitter.com/QldLAhmrHC— NWS Salt Lake City (@NWSSaltLakeCity) August 6, 2021
A spokesperson with Salt Lake City International Airport says flights have not been affected by the heavy smoke, but officials are keeping an eye on the conditions in case they get worse.
Wildfires continue to rage across the U.S. West, including the Dixie Fire in California — the state's sixth-largest wildfire ever.
This story was originally published by Jack Helean on Scripps station KSTU in Salt Lake City.